British government analysis of Brexit aftermath ‘dystopian’
‘People are not prepared for shortages in food or medicine ... It will be catastrophic’
Leanne McCooey: ‘It’s impossible to plan for something like this.’
“This will affect everyone,” said Leanne McCooey, proprietor of McCooey’s restaurant on Monaghan Street. “I’m going to be badly hit here as there are going to be shortages, especially with fresh produce.”
“It’s impossible to plan for something like this. This is really bad news for people in this area. And it is all based on a pack of lies from both sides. It has been a complete disaster,” she said.
The six-page Yellowhammer Brexit document warns that a number of UK firms could go bankrupt. It also cautions of possible civil unrest and significant effects on low-income families who will be disproportionately affected by price rises for food and fuel.
Responding to the warning that the impacts will be “particularly severe” in Border communities, Declan McChesney, the owner of the Cahill Brothers’ ladies fashion shop on Hill Street, said it predicts a “dystopian future”.
“I think what is not being understood is that if Britain crashes out and a border is put up people will die, and that’s the big issue. On top of that, people are not prepared for shortages in food or medicine,” he said.
“It will be catastrophic for society. And as retailers it will be incredibly difficult for us. We employ and vote for politicians and hope that they have a basic level of intelligence,” he added.
Local businessman Hugh Boyle said Newry has shown resilience in the past, but any border – electronic or physical – will inevitably create barriers for business.
Former cllr Charlie Smyth, now in his 80s, said: “Do people really need this? Are we going to go back to years ago where we are being stopped at borders? I thought that was all gone. I don’t think people will stand for it. Not this time.”
Martin Murtagh said the British government is playing with people’s lives and jobs.
“A no-deal Brexit, as this report shows, will be a disaster for Border communities, particularly here,” he said.